As revealed by the Chronicle this afternoon, Rafa Benitez has confirmed that he will be STAYING at Newcastle United next season after holding a round of ‘positive talks’ with the club’s hierarchy.
Whilst there’s nothing to confirm an agreement has been reached over a potential new contract at the club (with his current deal expiring next summer), it is hugely positive to hear he will be going nowhere this summer.
This comes just days after strong interest from West Ham, suggesting the club may have pulled their finger out to give him the necessary backing to keep him on Tyneside for at least another season yet.
Here’s a snippet from the Chronicle’s latest piece
“Rafa Benitez has told Newcastle United chiefs he has no intention of walking away from St James’ Park this summer.
“We understand that positive discussions have taken place between Benitez and the club hierarchy following a week of uncertainty since the campaign ended.
“A competitive transfer budget is in place, but Benitez knows he may have to shave the club’s wage bill if he wants to bring in more high-profile targets this summer.”
“Charnley has been told by owner Mike Ashley to ensure that Benitez remains in charge, with the former Real Madrid and Liverpool manager’s future at the top of the club’s priority list.”
So, it’s not the EXACT news we wanted to hear – which would be news that Rafa has agreed to a new long-term contract at the club – but this is a big step in the right direction, with ‘positive talks’ and a ‘competitive budget’ being a big improvement to what we were hearing this time last week.